The Sunk Cost Fallacy

As I minimise my belongings, I’m finding that the thing that gives me the most discomfort is owning up to sunk costs. These are the costs incurred in running your business or life which turned out to not be a good investment.

In my case, the sunk costs have long resided in my closet. It’s hard to admit that I spend £150 on a cashmere cardigan that I only wore once, but the money was paid years ago. Likewise, hanging onto it doesn’t make it a better purchase because it stuck around for a long time. If anything, it’s just taking up real estate. Then something more urgent came along.

Shoes have proved to be a huge problem. To say that I loved wearing heels would be inaccurate, but I did wear a lot of heels and felt a sort of pride in my aching feet. I can walk in the stilettos that make most women wobble on Saturday night. I even used to wear them all day, towering over everyone in my office. However, I read an article over the weekend which indicated that heels lead to lower back pain and a shortened, aching psoas.

As a dancer, an aching psoas has made it hard for me to enjoy movement, and I’ve wondered for a long time what could have caused this. In the past, I never needed to stretch my lower back mid-class, and never had a backbend hurt so much. It shocked me to learn that my shoes might be behind the problem I’m experiencing now. So, I started a new purge just for my shoes. So far, I have three pairs of heels remaining. I hope to be able to buy some barefoot shoes to replace this gaping hole, but at least I know I’m doing my back a favour. In this case, the [sunk] cost of those heels is definitely too high.

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